Neil's Writing

[A B C] 'Creative writing' is usually reserved for time sheets and progress reports. However, from time to time I've found myself composing some short piece of literature. Judging by the number of copies of my writing that have been stolen from my site and posted elsewhere (usually without credit), I'd like to think that I have some talent. Still, I don't intend to give up my day job.

Computer Science

Differential Synchronization
An architecture for collaborative text editing.
Diff and Patch
Improving the algorithms driving the central tools for version control.
Cursor Preservation
Techniques for preserving cursor locations in collaborative editors.
Exception Handling
The problems and benefits of programming exception handlers.
Virtual Host Insecurity
A technical document illustrating some of the security pitfalls of virtual hosting.
Neural Network Follies
Illustrates two of the pitfalls of neural networks.


Inverness and Elgin
A short video of Inverness and Elgin, in the North of Scotland.
The Bridges of Inverness
Photographs and history of the bridges across the River Ness and Caledonian Canal.
Photographs and technical description of the controls for a railroad switch.
Cycling Britain
An account of my experiences while cycling from one end of Britain to the other.
The one, the only, photograph of Earth
Why is it that every photograph of Earth is identical?
It's alive, it's alive!
A serious discussion about the qualifiers of life.


Insurance Policy
A short science fiction story about testing the ultimate bomb.
You're fired
16,777,216 fun ways to fire someone.
The Exam
Would you pass the final exam for the 'Space Force Marines'?
Instructions for the MARK II HAND PHASER
You have just purchased a new Star Trek phaser. Here is the instruction manual.
Hard work may pay off in the end, but procrastination pays off now.
Script for Star Trek Skit
Parody that a group of us performed many years ago in Ottawa.
Last modified: 26 August 2010